CARETAKER boss Neil Redfearn does not believe he has to win every game he has in charge in order to be given the chance of the Leeds United manager’s job full-time, but defeat in tonight’s game at bottom of the table Coventry will send his odds soaring.
Chairman Ken Bates gave Redfearn the green light to stay in charge for four matches and he has begun with a win and a defeat so far before taking the Whites to Coventry tonight and then facing Doncaster Rovers at home in a Yorkshire derby on Saturday.
The 2-1 defeat at home to Brighton last Saturday did not help Redfearn’s cause, although the team did play better than in some home matches this season and there was a noticeably more measured passing approach to their play.
They were also unlucky that referee Graham Salisbury somehow failed to spot a blatant penalty when Ross McCormack was felled in the area by Adam El-Abd and it was only an injury-time strike to which goalkeeper Andy Lonergan could have done better that secured the points for an in-form Seagulls outfit now unbeaten in nine.
Redfearn will be hoping that the mitigating circumstances behind United’s unfortunate defeat will be noticed as he states his case for the manager’s hot seat.
He said: “My position doesn’t change. If I looked at it as though I had to win every game I’d never get up in a morning.
“I’m here to take it one game at a time and it’s a difficult situation as regards that. You can’t really plan. But I’m happy to keep it going that way.
“I’m doing my best for the club. There are problems there and that’s why I am sat here. If I can help in any way, then great.
“Conceding two so late on is a trait that has run through this season and you can understand why it’s been a problem.
“Clean sheets win football matches, as daft as it sounds.The problems that have been there in the past are there to see.
“It’s a lack of professionalism and that’s something that has run through for a while.”
The pressure is certainly on for tonight’s trip to Coventry with Leeds now four points off the play-off places and their hosts desperate for points to pull themselves off the bottom of the league.
After naming an unchanged team for his first two games in charge, Redfearn may do the same again, although Andros Townsend has a chance of being recalled on the left wing in place of either Aidan White or Danny Pugh.
He is expecting a difficult game at Coventry despite their opponents’ lowly position.
He said: “Coventry will be a tough test and looking at the players in the dressing room on Saturday, they were genuinely gutted. But it’s like anything else in terms of professional football, If we’d have won 2-1 on Saturday, we’d still have to go to Coventry and get a result. That will never change.
“One or two had their heads on the floor, but we’ll get their heads up.
“What they don’t realise is that this is a fantastic way to earn a living. They’re at a great club and it’s an honour to play for such a big club. They should be up for that every day and that’s what I’ll be instilling in them.
“They’ll get their heads up and we go into Coventry, do battle and get three points.
“It’s about getting ready again and getting prepared, making sure we give a good account of ourselves and getting some points.”